The Madonie Massif: Pizzo Carbonara

Pizzo Carbonara is the highest point of the Madonie massif, in good conditions it provides beautiful views of the sea and out to Etna.

Technical sheet
No. 4098478
A Petralia Sottana walk posted on 12/08/15 by LB_Neil. Update : 09/05/16
Calculated time Calculated time: 3h05[?]
Distance Distance : 7.1km
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 361m
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 356m
Highest point Highest point : 1965m
Lowest point Lowest point : 1612m
Easy Difficulty : Easy
Back to starting point Back to starting point : Yes
Walking Walking
Location Location : Petralia Sottana
Starting point Starting point : N 37.879404° / E 14.028567°
Download : -


Start at the top of Piano Battaglia, a small ski and summer holiday resort (deserted in early May).

We follow a good path through the grass to the north-east, passing by branch off to the right heading towards a small pass.
It then turns left, heading north and then north-west, with some red paint markings and some cairns.
In early May, all the shady spots were still covered with fairly soft snow: no problem.
A right hand Pizzo Antenna (no antennae to be seen!), which rises to 1977 m.
It has views of Pizzo Carbonara and the summit at 1979 m (1) is quickly reached after about an hour and a half’s walk.
Beautiful views of the coast and, ideally, Mount Etna if the weather is clear.

After stopping at the top, retrace your steps a little then follow a ridge overlooking the depression on the left, with some cairns (no real path) and soon come into view of a building in the south-west, beneath Pizzo Scalonazo.
Once at this building, we see that it is an old shelter (2), it is now in ruins, and it no longer provides much shelter.

We leave and continue for about a hundred metres to the north-west to reach a well-marked path.
Followed it left downhill until you reach the tarmac road (fortunately with very little traffic) (3), take it to the left to return to the starting point.

Waypoints :
D/A : km 0 - alt. 1632m
1 : km 3.22 - alt. 1964m - Pizzo Carbonara
2 : km 4.17 - alt. 1890m - A shelter in ruins
3 : km 5.95 - alt. 1612m - Paved road
D/A : km 7.1 - alt. 1632m

Useful Information

No water nearby.
No shelter since the Scalonazo shelter is damaged, it is located at 37° 53' 11.33" N 14° 1' 8.28" E
Usual equipment for a walk at an altitude of 2000 m.

There is the option to shorten the hike somewhat and avoid a lot of tarmac roads by taking a path to the top of descent beneath Scalonazo: it is very well marked at first then requires a bit of searching leading to the road, but not too difficult with good visibility.

Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

During the walk or to do/see around

There is also the option of heading up to Pizzo Scalonazo, above the old shelter: there is undoubtedly a beautiful view of Piano Battaglia.
There is supposedly a monument to a dog up there.
We have not been to check.

There is also the opportunity possibility to extend the circuit a little by taking the trail beyond the summit of Pizzo Carbonara to find the path described beneath bivacco Scolonazo, but we have not checked this so it is up to you to check.

Opinions and comments


Global average : 5/5
Number of opinions : 1
Description quality : 5/5
Routemap quality : 5/5
Walk interest : 5/5

on Mon 05 Nov 2018 17:51:24 CET

Global average : 5 / 5

Date of walk : 08/10/18
Description quality : Very good
Easiness to follow the route : Very good
Walk interest : Very good

We did this walk which gives superb panoramic views over most of Sicily. It is quite a rugged path due to the typical limestone karst terrain but very straight forward. We did the extended loop from the summit (1) around to the north east and round to beneath bivacco Scolonazo (2). This was well worth it as you walk around the rim of a spectacular circular swallow hole and lovely beech tree lined paths with views to the west. There were also a lot of deer with stags to be seen and heard. An excellent walk which took 2hrs moving time and covered 8kms. Time of year October.

The GPS track and description are the property of the author.